Everyone experiences fear during their life. But some fears can keep you from being healthy and having a good quality of life. At Masterpiece Smiles in Tulsa, OK, we know how important oral health is and we want to do everything we can to ease your fears about getting dental care.
If you have anxiety about visiting the dentist, you’re not alone. It’s estimated that 9 to 15 percent of Americans avoid seeing the dentist because of anxiety or fear, even though most dental procedures aren’t painful!
Dental anxiety can cause people to postpone important dental care over their exaggerated or unfounded worries or fears. Some people will even put up with pain from a toothache or gum infection rather than go to the dentist.
And there are different levels of anxiety. Some people may not look forward to a visit to the dentist but they’ll go anyway because they know how important proper dental care is.
On the other hand, some people have more of a phobia, which can keep them from receiving any dental care at all. And that is not good news because regular dental cleanings can keep many dental problems from happening in the first place. They can keep tartar and plaque, which can cause gum disease, from forming on your teeth.
Regular dental exams can also keep your teeth and gums healthy so you don’t have to experience pain, like toothaches, in the first place.
Some causes of dental anxiety and phobia include:
- Fear of pain. Some people fear pain because they might have had some dental work done before advances were made in pain-free dentistry. People who experienced pain or discomfort at the dentist in the past are likely to be reluctant to return to the dentist, even if it’s a different dentist.
- Embarrassment or self-consciousness. Your teeth may not be in the best shape because you’ve put off getting regular dental exams due to anxiety. And then you’re embarrassed to go at all because of the shape of your teeth. You should relax, though, because nobody’s judging. We’re here to help.
- Feelings of helplessness. Just the fact that they don’t know what to expect in a dental exam can give many people anxiety.
Sedation Dentistry Could Be The Answer
If you experience feelings of anxiety at the thought of coming to the dentist, take heart. At Masterpiece Smiles in Tulsa, OK, we offer the advantage of sedation dentistry.
Sedation dentistry is using medication to calm patients, and it is a fantastic option for people who feel anxious or afraid at the dentist’s office.
What Kind Of Sedation Is Available At Our Office?
We offer two types of sedation dentistry at our Tulsa, OK office: nitrous oxide and oral medication.
- Nitrous oxide (better known as laughing gas). Before a procedure we will ask you to breathe in through a small mask that we’ve placed over your nose. You will breathe in the nitrous oxide. One of the best things about nitrous oxide is that it works as soon as you start breathing it in, and the effects go away quickly after the procedure is over. Most people can drive home after a dental treatment with nitrous oxide.
- Sedation in pill form. You take the pill one hour before coming to your appointment. Unlike with nitrous oxide, the effects of the pill sedative can last a few hours. Because of that, you’ll need to find someone to drive you to and from our office. Oral medication is stronger than nitrous oxide, so it can help when your anxiety and worry is moderate to severe.
Both sedation options induce a relaxed feeling and both options allow you to respond respond to the dentist.
If you’re worried about getting dental work done, sedation canmake those worries disappear. You’ll be relaxed and comfortable throughout your treatment.
Oral health is extremely important, and it is closely tied to the health of the rest of your body. So many issues can crop up with your teeth and gums because of neglect: receding gums, tooth decay, periodontitis, teeth crowding, just to name a few.